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This article was published on February 4, 2014

Google enables pinch-to-zoom by default in latest Chrome build for Windows

Google enables pinch-to-zoom by default in latest Chrome build for Windows
Emil Protalinski
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Emil Protalinski

Emil was a reporter for The Next Web between 2012 and 2014. Over the years, he has covered the tech industry for multiple publications, incl Emil was a reporter for The Next Web between 2012 and 2014. Over the years, he has covered the tech industry for multiple publications, including Ars Technica, Neowin, TechSpot, ZDNet, and CNET. Stay in touch via Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

Google has enabled pinch-to-zoom in the Chrome Canary channel for Windows. The feature works in both the desktop and metro experiences on Windows 8 as well as Windows 8.1.

The addition was first noted by developer and Google open-source Chromium evangelist François Beaufort. He points to a Chromium code review with the following details:

Enable pinch-to-zoom on Windows 8 by default
This is the android style PtZ. It has known issues wrt to fixed-position elements.
This is effective in desktop and metro experiences.

Beaufort was also kind enough to upload a video of the feature in action:

Chrome for Windows already offers an on-screen keyboard for touch devices as well as a horizontal swipe gesture for navigating back and forward between webpages. Pinch-to-zoom is a notable addition, however, as it hints the company is looking to further make its browser the default experience on Windows, regardless of whether you’re in desktop mode or metro mode.

In fact, as of Chrome 32, Google has a new design specifically for the metro side of Windows 8. In short, it’s Chrome OS inside Microsoft’s operating system: you can manage multiple Chrome windows and launch Chrome Apps from an integrated app launcher.

Google says Canary is “the most bleeding-edge official version of Chrome and somewhat of a mix between Chrome dev and the Chromium snapshot builds.” We wouldn’t be surprised if more and more touch features start flooding Chrome for Windows over the next few months, slowly making their way to the stable channel. 2014 is shaping up to be the year when everything becomes touch-friendly, at least for Microsoft and Google.

See also – Google brings Chrome apps to Android and iOS, lets developers submit to Google Play and Apple’s App Store and Google is building a Chrome app-based development environment called Spark

Top Image Credit: T. Al Nakib

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